On 31 July the Competition Commission of South Africa (“the Commission”) released its final findings and remedial actions arising from its market inquiry into online platforms. The inquiry investigated a range of concerns that echo those recently raised in respect of digital markets in Europe, and sought to investigate those concerns in the context of more nascent digital markets in South Africa. The inquiry paid particular attention to the effects of online platforms on small South African businesses, and represents the first market study undertaken under amended competition legislation giving the Commission the authority to impose remedies on market participants.
RBB teams advised several firms throughout the inquiry process, including during extensive negotiations with the Commission over commercially viable remedy packages.
An RBB team led by Patrick Smith and Jacob Muller advised e-commerce marketplace Takealot.com as well as food delivery platform MrD Food. RBB's Richard Murgatroyd and Simon Lee led a team advising the online property classifieds platform Property24 and the automotive classifieds platform Autotrader. Both teams worked alongside law firm Herbert Smith Freehills. A separate RBB team led by Stephen Lewis and Yi Ling Ng advised Google, working together with law firms Slaughter and May and Fasken.